Exclusive interview: Five Minutes with Trrmà

Afrofuturism duo Trrmà has released a new song titled ‘Shisapangma’, prior to their album release titled The Earth’s Relief( 1 May 2020). This pairing consists of Giovanni Todisco, who plays the drums and percussions. The other half includes Giuseppe Candiano who studied Jazz guitar and trumpet, before teaching himself how to use a synthesizer. Their music sits close to that of Clap! Clap! and Flying Lotus, and Portico Quartet. We find more about the duo in our exclusive interview with them. 

Set the tone for us. Why the arts?

Art is a way to express and challenge yourself every day, which is “creation” and a way to see the world differently.

Which comes first when you’re producing – the sound or the idea?

Mostly we start with rhythm, or with a drumbeat, or a synth sequencing. After that we built sounds, tone, and timbre on it, sometimes we use mathematic or geometry to generate new sequences trying to alternate the rhythm complexity to sound’s primordiality.

Does your material feature any collaborations?

Our last release ‘Segments From Bari’  in collaboration with the great Charlemagne Palestine.  We’ve combined our experience with Xenakis’ stochastic method with the unique sound of  Palestine’s “strumming“ piano technic.

What’s on your current playlist?

Deantony Park, Elvin Jones, Mononeon, Koreatown oddity, Joan la Barbara, DJ Stingray, Tony Allen, Russell Haswell.

Tell us about the chemistry you have with your fans on stage.

We work to increase chemistry with our fans. With a  live set, different and more direct than the record. We try to focus on beat repetition creating trance loud patterns, emphasizing the bass frequencies.  It’s great to see them directly in those eyes and being sure about what we’re doing. Mostly they think that our music is totally improvised, so they are really surprised when we say to them  that it’s every night the same.

What techniques do you experiment with to get your original sound?

We experiment with different ways of composition,  kind of percussion, and electronics styles.

We used mathematics and probability calculation, making a sort of improvised music, but completely composed. Studying this, we trained a lot on our taste and our brain, so now we are able again to do easier ways of composition, keeping our personal and original style in sounds and rhythmics.  

Take us through a day in the recording studio.

In the studio we work to recreate the “magic” of live sound, we select a big room to record a big percussion sound;  we are fast to record and often the first take is the “one” with more feelings!

9.30am : we go to the bar for coffee and a croissant.

10.00am: we are in the recording studio, setting up the instruments and mics.

01.00pm: big lunch and jokes.

02.30pm: we play and record.

07.00pm: start to mix. 

10.00pm: we go for giant pizzas. 

Was there a specific moment in your life where you thought, “this is what I want to do”?

We both have different starting points, but when you are ready to put behind you a lot of certainties….there you are.

What do you keep close by while you’re playing a set?

One extra stick close to the drums and a “patches notebook” on the electronics table.

Any emerging artists on your radar?

Olbos, Irtumbranda, Arrsalendo

What gets your creative juices flowing?

Listening to a lot of different music is our creative juice… but also reading, traveling and idleness.

Any side projects you’re working on?


How have you refined your craft since you entered the industry?

Of course, we want to reach more people as much as we can. Some years ago we were quite sure about doing just what we really liked.  Now, differently then before, we are doing what we like, but we are looking after the people who want to see and listen to our show. We are influenced by the music around the world, the experiences and by the networks of people/ workers/professionals around us.

Breakdown the news for us: what can we expect from you this year?

An official lysergic videoclip, with animation and editing curated by different visual artists across the world.

New album release  “The Earth’s Relief”,  out in may.

European Tour in May;

some festivals scheduled for the beginning of summer;

 and Japan Tour in September/October. 

Famous last words?

“With this record, we will conquer the world”


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